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Connect multiple controllers to Blackbox Device Port with USB hub?

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  • Connect multiple controllers to Blackbox Device Port with USB hub?

    I'm new here so hello to everyone! Thanks in advance for any advice. My goal is to connect two USB MIDI controllers at once (for example, a keyboard and a drum pad controller) to the BB's device port. I'm assuming this would require some sort of USB hub? Some of my existing controllers are USB only (Akai MPKmini Mk2, Akai MIDImix) and I recently ordered a PreSonus Atom which is also USB only. All of my controllers, with the exception of the CME X-Key 37 (wired version, not the X-Key Air), work fine when their USB connector is plugged directly into the BB's device port. But if I try to expand the number of USB ports available by using a hub that's plugged into the BB's device port things get wonky. The devices that only send MIDI over USB don't work at all when going through a hub. I have a few devices that have both USB and separate MIDI OUT connections (Arturia Keystep, CME X-Key 37, Akai MPD226) where if I use the hub to supply power from the BB's device port to the controller and then connect the separate MIDI OUT from the controller to the BB's MIDI IN it works fine but of course that means I've used up the BB's only MIDI IN port so I can't connect anything else (and the X-Key 37 requires this configuration even without using a hub).

    At first I thought this might just be an insufficient power issue so I tried using my TP-Link UH720 7-port powered hub getting its power from a 12-volt 3300ma wall adapter but I still get the same results. That leads me to believe I may not be understanding something fundamental about the way the BB's USB host/device port is designed to work. I'm even looking at the iConnectivity mioXM box as a potential solution because it seems like it's designed to work with anything but I don't want to pull the trigger on it unless I'm sure it solves the problem and there isn't a cheaper, more backpack and power friendly solution available. Any suggestions?

  • #2
    Good question ! I am also interested in plugging multiple controllers on BB. +1

    djsnowbadger, the Presonus Atom is a good controller for BB ? What about standalone functionalities with the BB ?

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    • magicwill
      magicwill commented
      Editing a comment
      Alright ! thank you for your answer. I just found this Best Pad Controller topic (https://forum.1010music.com/forum/pr.../page3?pp=4788) , where you published. I'll follow feedback from users

    • djsnowbadger
      djsnowbadger commented
      Editing a comment
      Quick update on this. I think I have finally got my ultimate portable setup together. The ATOM is working out great. I love the portability, features, and the pad sensitivity and responsiveness seems just right for me. Only thing I wish it had was dedicated midi in/out ports but I can live without them. If I want to use the Keystep or X-Key 37 at the same time as the ATOM I just connect those to the BB via their DIN5 midi outs and use their USB connections to get power from a USB battery. I'm using a 20000 mAh USB battery to power the BB and keyboard and using the BB's device port for the ATOM. I picked up this case (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1) which is just big enough to hold the ATOM, BB, USB battery, a few cables, and earplugs but still fits in my backpack just fine. For portable speakers I'm using 2 Minirig Mini speakers. Each one fits in a 4 in. x 4 in. padded camera lens pouch along with an audio cable, charging cable, and Samsung phone charger. All of that fits easily in my backpack or a bike pannier with plenty of room left for a Volca, an iPad, and small audio recorder / interface (I'm using a Centrance Mixerface R4R w/ X/Y capsule mics for capturing field samples and to act as an audio interface for my iPad).

    • magicwill
      magicwill commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks for all these details and advices !! You've got such a great nomad setup, it's definitely what i'm looking for ! I think i'm gonna looking for pick an ATOM now ! Does it play sequences and the pads layout ?

  • #3
    Currently, the Blackbox does not support a USB hub. The mioXM looks like a good option. ESI makes some interesting options, too. I have not used the ESI products but they look capable and should work for your scenario assuming 3 USB ports are enough. https://www.esi-audio.com/products/m4uex/

    Comment


    • djsnowbadger
      djsnowbadger commented
      Editing a comment
      Steve J, thank you very much for confirming my suspicion that hubs are not currently supported by the BB and for the tip about the ESI solutions. Looks like the M4U eX is a better solution than the mioXM for me in that it can be bus powered and does not need any drivers for use with Windows computers.

    • Steve
      Steve commented
      Editing a comment
      djsnowbadger

      I have the M8UeX and could not be happier with it.
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